Robotron: 2084 (also referred to as Robotron) is an arcade video game developed by Vid Kidz and released by Williams Electronics (part of WMS Industries) in 1982. It is a shoot 'em up that features two-dimensional (2D) graphics. The game is set in the year 2084, in a fictional world where robots have turned against humans in a cybernetic revolt. The aim is to defeat endless waves of robots, rescue surviving humans, and earn as many points as possible.
The designers, Eugene Jarvis and Larry DeMar, drew inspiration from other popular media: Nineteen Eighty-Four and Berzerk. A two-joystick control scheme was developed to provide the player with more-precise controls, and enemies with different behaviors were added to make the game challenging. Jarvis and DeMar designed the game to instill panic in players by presenting them with conflicting goals and having on-screen projectiles coming from multiple directions.
Robotron: 2084 was critically and commercially successful. Praise among critics focused on the game's intense action and control scheme. The game is frequently listed as one of Jarvis's best contributions to the video game industry. Robotron: 2084 arcade cabinets have since become a sought-after collector's item. It was ported to numerous platforms, inspired the development of other games, and followed by sequels.
The game is considered by many to be an unofficial part of the company's Defender saga, including by many of its developers.
Robotron is a 2D multi-directional shooter game in which the player controls the on-screen protagonist from a top-down perspective. The game is set in the year 2084 in a fictional world where robots ("Robotrons") have taken control of the world and eradicated most of the human race. The main protagonist is a nameless superhuman attempting to save the last human family.
The game uses a two-joystick control scheme; the left joystick controls the on-screen character's movement, while the right controls the direction the character's weapon fires. Both joysticks allow for an input direction in one of eight ways. Each level, referred to as a "wave", is a single screen populated with a large number of various enemy robots; types include invincible giants to robots that continually manufacture other robots that shoot the protagonist. Coming into contact with an enemy or enemy projectile results in the character dying. Waves also include human family members which can be rescued to score additional points. Defeating all the onscreen-robots allows the player to progress to a more difficult wave; the cycle continues until the player depletes extra attempts to continue the game.
January 12, 2018 Subject:
Same Game ... Same Old Problems...
Enjoyed the game as a kid, and playing on my computer has brought back some arcade memories of old ... Including the bug that they supposedly fixed, but haven't.
The higher you go into the levels of play, the rate of fire and speed of movement for the player is drastically impacted. This is the same issue that plagued the consoles in the 80's that turned me off from Robotron back than.
The attacks persist at a normal rate of speed but increase as you advance through to the next levels.
There's more added to shoot, avoid and weave through to survive in later levels. The Grunts, Hulk's, Sphereoids, Tanks, Brainiacs, and Enforcers projectiles and speed of movement don't slow down at all. However, the rate of fire and movement for the player is half at best and slow; or shooting just breaks in midstream. That is if, and only if, you manage to eliminate some of the attackers that your rate of fire and speed of movement slowly begins to return. In all, making later levels of play virtually impossible to pass. Just like on the 80's consoles.
In all, I liked the game as a kid and have enjoyed playing it again. Too bad the old problems still persist. Would have liked to see how far I could've really gone, on a working game without the bugs... it's a drag... but still had its fun moments.
October 25, 2016 Subject:
Simcor hit F2 to continue to start screen after factory reset
Simcor hit F2 to continue to start screen after factory reset.
WOW this game is hard and very addicting, i lose hours at work!
July 26, 2016 Subject:
It gets as far of Factory Settings restored when it boots
up, won't go any further???
March 29, 2016 Subject:
Great version, but a few issues
First, the difficulty levels don't change, and even on the easiest level it is harder than the arcade version (i.e. the grunts speed up to their fastest speed far too quickly, the enforcer circles are overly elusive to try to shoot, and the enforcers are coming out shooting before the player can even make it to the edge of the board, even on lower levels). Just as bad is the keyboard configuration...up down left right should be in a cross (with an idle key in the centre of the cross)...using ESDF and IJKL makes proper movement almost impossible. C should be the down key and "," should be the down fire, and the setup should obviously have an option to change the keyboard controls, but it doesn't. Still fun but not the same version that Williams released as part of its DOS version package a long time ago.
December 26, 2015 Subject:
This game will live on forever. 2 to 3 games right when I get home from work and my brain is reset. Love it!!!!
November 20, 2014 Subject:
A milestone in game design
The invention of the twin-stick shooter is one of the great milestones in video game history.
The sheer mass of opponents in Robotron was only possible to fight because you could earn extra lives so quickly by rescuing a lot of humanoids.
On the Grunt waves (waves numbered a multiple of 9) presented so many enemies, you could kill one with every shot and still lose.
Add in the Hulks which couldn't be killed, Sphereoids which had to be killed before they could pump out tons of Enforcers, and you had a recipe for sheer panic.
This game deserves to be played over 30 years later, and still delivers a lot of fun. No powerups: just one man and his gun.
November 14, 2014 Subject:
Robotron has a serious following
While I never got into the Robotron fandom, a lot of people loved this game with its dual joysticks. People play this to this day.
I'm giving this a 5/5 because people love it to this day. I'm not one of those people yet, but a 1980s game which holds itself into the 2000s is good.
I haven't tested if XBOX360 controllers are good for this.